Phillip Morris Earnings Up in Smoke

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Phillip Morris International Inc. (NYSE: PM) released its third-quarter earnings report before the markets opened on Thursday. The company posted $1.27 in earnings per share (EPS) and $7.5 billion in revenue. Consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters had called for $1.38 in EPS on revenue of $7.72 billion. In the same period of last year, the cigarette-maker posted EPS of $1.25 and $6.98 billion in revenue.

For the quarter, cigarette and heated tobacco unit shipment volume fell by about 0.5% to 208.2 billion. Separately, cigarette shipment volume fell by 4.1% to $198.5 billion. and heated tobacco unit shipment volume was 9.7 billion units, up from 2.1 billion in 2016.

In terms of the outlook for the 2017 full year, Phillip Morris expects to see EPS in the range of $4.75 to $4.80 and net revenue growth of over 7%, excluding currency and acquisitions. The consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters are $4.84 in EPS and $28.62 billion in revenue.

During the quarter, Phillip Morris (PMI) increased its regular quarterly dividend by 2.9% from $1.04 to $1.07, representing an annualized rate of $4.28 per common share. Since its spin-off in March 2008, PMI has increased its regular quarterly dividend by 132.6% from the initial annualized rate of $1.84 per common share, or a compound annual growth rate of 9.8%.

CEO André Calantzopoulos commented:

As expected, our third-quarter financial results were very strong, including double-digit currency-neutral EPS growth.

We recorded a sequential improvement in our total volume performance, driven by both our combustible and reduced-risk products, and grew our international market share.

Despite pressure on profitability from adverse developments in Russia and Saudi Arabia, as well as significant investments behind IQOS, which continues its stellar performance, we are on track to deliver full-year currency-neutral adjusted diluted EPS growth of approximately 9% to 10%, highlighting both the strength of our combustible business and the exciting potential of a smoke-free future.

Shares of Phillip Morris were last seen down over 3% at $108.22, with a consensus analyst price target of $125.75 and a 52-week range of $86.78 to $123.55.